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Room Reflections & Human Adaptation for Small Room Acoustics

Dealing with acoustics in small rooms is no trivial matter. This article focuses on how to treat early reflections based on listening habits,

Room Reflections & Human Adaptation for Small Room Acoustics
Dolby Withdraws Upmixing Restrictions: A Win for Consumers?

Last year we reported on Dolby restricting upmixing of non-native content through their DSU. Due to backlash, Dolby has withdrawn this

Dolby Withdraws Upmixing Restrictions: A Win for Consumers?
Dirac Live Bass Management System To Debut at CEDIA Promising Perfect Bass

The new Dirac Live Bass Management protocol debuts at CEDIA this September and promises perfect bass for your home theater making multi-sub

Dirac Live Bass Management System To Debut at CEDIA Promising Perfect Bass

AV Research

Audioholics tech articles are well researched and chock full of great detail on how products and technologies operate. Our staff of electrical and acoustical engineers, combined with industry expert guest writers ensures you're getting a true AV education when researching all topics from HDTV, cables, room acoustics, loudspeakers, amplifiers and all things related to audio and video technologies.

Room Reflections & Human Adaptation for Small Room Acoustics

Room Reflections & Human Adaptation for Small Room Acoustics

Dealing with acoustics in small rooms is no trivial matter. The quest for the “perfect” room all depends on your expectations, why you are listening (business or pleasure), what program you are listening to, and the condition of the ears you are listening through. This article and recently added YouTube discussion focuses on the topic of early reflections in small room acoustics and how to deal with them based on listening preferences and the accuracy of your loudspeakers. The portions of side walls responsible for first lateral reflections are specified as “optional areas: absorb, diffuse, reflect.” It is a decision to be made by the customer and/or the installer.

Dealing with acoustics in small rooms is no trivial matter. This article focuses on how to treat early reflections based on listening habits, your loudspeaker choice. Absorb, diffuse, reflect; decide.

Dr. Floyd Toole — October 14, 2019 23:00 in Room Acoustics

Dolby Withdraws Upmixing Restrictions: A Win for Consumers?

Dolby Withdraws Upmixing Restrictions: A Win for Consumers?

Last year we reported on Dolby restricting upmixing of non-native content through their DSU or crossmixing their formats with other upmixers. This had the potential of restricting consumer choices for upmixing content through competitor upmixers such as DTS Neural:X or Auro-matic. Apparently enough backlash was felt from licensee partners and consumers causing Dolby to withdraw this restriction on new Atmos enabled AV products. Read on to find out the implications and what to expect going forward.

Last year we reported on Dolby restricting upmixing of non-native content through their DSU. Due to backlash, Dolby has withdrawn this restriction on Atmos enabled AV products going forward.

— August 27, 2019 00:05 in Audio Technologies

Dirac Live Bass Management System To Debut at CEDIA Promising Perfect Bass

Dirac Live Bass Management System To Debut at CEDIA Promising Perfect Bass

The new Dirac Live Bass Management protocol debuts at CEDIA this September and promises perfect bass for your home theater. Their long awaited bass management software is said to analyze the bass in your room from each subwoofer and speaker and put them in perfect phase alignment with each other while also smoothing out the response. Will this open up more placement options and make it easier to integrate your subwoofers? Read on to find out.

The new Dirac Live Bass Management protocol debuts at CEDIA this September and promises perfect bass for your home theater making multi-sub placement easier to integrate and setup in your room.

— August 22, 2019 19:00 in Audio Technologies

Understanding Subwoofer Review Distortion Measurements Part III

Understanding Subwoofer Review Distortion Measurements Part III

In our subwoofer reviews, we post a very comprehensive set of measurements that illuminates the full range of a subwoofer's performance. We have noticed that one of the graph sets in our subwoofer reviews have been a bit cryptic for much of our readership, however, for those who understand what is being displayed, they are some of the most illuminating graphs in looking at how well the subwoofer maintains accuracy from low loudness levels to its maximum limits. In this article, we attempt to shed some light on these graphs so any reader can follow them to get a better understanding of what their subwoofer is actually doing.

In this article, we attempt to shed some light on subwoofer distortion graphs so any reader can follow them to get a better understanding of how the subwoofer objectively perform in our reviews.

— June 26, 2019 00:00 in Loudspeaker Design

Understanding Loudspeaker Review Measurements Part II

Understanding Loudspeaker Review Measurements Part II

The waterfall plots and polar maps often seen in Audioholics' speaker reviews are colorful and visually interesting, but what can they really tell us about a loudspeaker's performance? In this article, we explain the meaning of these graphs. We try to help you understand what to look for in determining the sound character of speakers from the information displayed in these graphs, so you can use them to find the right speaker for your system.

The waterfall plots and polar maps often seen in Audioholics' speaker reviews are colorful and visually interesting, but what can they really tell us about a loudspeaker's performance?

— June 12, 2019 00:00 in Loudspeaker Design

Can Sound United Bring Honest Power Ratings to AV Receivers?

Can Sound United Bring Honest Power Ratings to AV Receivers?

In this editorial, we make a call to action to Sound United, the largest entity of AV receiver manufacturers, to lead the industry in specifying amplifier power more honestly. We suggest a method of rating multi-ch AV receivers to give consumers a better idea of actual product performance. Truth has become a marketable commodity in an era of fake news. We’re calling this the Truth in Power (TiP) movement. And that movement is going to need our readers’ signatures and voices too. Tell us what you think and sign our petition today!

This is a call to action to Sound United to lead the industry in rating amplifier power in AV receivers more honestly. We are calling it the Truth in Power Movement and we need your help!

— June 05, 2019 12:00 in Audio Amplifiers

Understanding Loudspeaker Review Measurements Part I

Understanding Loudspeaker Review Measurements Part I

Over the last couple of years, Audioholics’ speaker reviews have contained measurement graphs that have prompted questions from many readers about the meaning and importance of the information displayed in them. Some readers have found the information in them confusing, and that is our fault for not recognizing how cryptic these sort of representations are for an average reader. In this article, we explain frequency response and the set of frequency response curves known as the 'Spin-O-Rama' curves.

Audioholics’ speaker reviews often contain detailed measurement graphs. In this article, we explain frequency response and the set of curves known as the 'Spin-O-Rama' to help you pick better product.

— May 24, 2019 21:00 in Loudspeaker Design

Demystifying 4K UHD: What Does it All Mean?

Demystifying 4K UHD: What Does it All Mean?

Ultra High Definition is finally starting to take hold in the market with equipment prices that are beginning to drop into the range for buyers of normal means with more HD content becoming available for everyone’s viewing enjoyment. But what does the new technology entail and how does one navigate all the new specifications, acronyms, and jargon along with all the recycled, updated, and bastardized terminology from the previous generation of HDTV. That is where Audioholics comes in to do some critical review to help you, the reader, sort through it all.

This guide to 4K UHD HDTV navigates through the new specifications, acronyms, and jargon along with all the recycled, updated, and bastardized terminology from the previous generation of HDTV.

— March 03, 2019 22:00 in HDTV Display Formats

Speaker Grilles On Or Off: Which Way Sounds Better?

Speaker Grilles On Or Off: Which Way Sounds Better?

Do grilles on speakers really make a difference on or off? Most home audio loudspeaker grilles are removable so their use is optional for most applications. Given how fussy audio enthusiasts can be though the use of grilles has been a point of strong personal preference for as long as there have been home audio loudspeakers. This article will help resolve the issue of whether or not to remove them for critical listening and how they affect the overall sound. Check out our recently added YouTube discussion on this topic for further insights.

Do speakers sound better with their grilles on or off? This article compares the two options to scientifically determine which way is best and what other factors can impact sound more dramatically.

— February 18, 2019 08:00 in Loudspeaker Design

What's More Accurate a Microphone or our Ears?

What's More Accurate a Microphone or our Ears?

Which is more accurate at detecting sound: our ears or a microphone? Most people might automatically assume a microphone since a good microphone can measure sound pressure over frequency so precisely, but the reality is even the most sophisticated microphones are relatively simple devices compared to human hearing. What makes our hearing so special compared to the exactitude of a microphone? You will have to read our article to see if the ear is mightier than the microphone at gauging sound.

Which is more accurate at detecting sound: our ears or a microphone? This article argues the distinction between perception and technical measurements and how that relates to our enjoyment of sound.

— December 27, 2018 00:00 in Room Acoustics

Turntables—A Short History and Explanation

Turntables—A Short History and Explanation

Turntables are getting very popular again. People are rediscovering the romance and appeal of vinyl, plus there is the now-solidly-entrenched faction that simply believes that analog-produced music sounds better than digitally-produced music. Today, $3000 turntables are commonplace. But how did we get here? Let’s take a step back and look at the history and development of the modern turntable to see why things are as they are.

People are rediscovering the romance and appeal of vinyl. With the popularity of turntables on the rise we decided to take a look at the history and development of the modern turntable to see why.

— October 26, 2018 00:00 in Audio Technologies

IMAX Enhanced Certification: What Are You Really Getting?

IMAX Enhanced Certification: What Are You Really Getting?

IMAX has been a staple in the movie theaters as the best in sound and video for over a decade. Now they want to bring that experience into the home theater realm but it's going to involve 3 things: IMAX Enhanced hardware, and content. OK that's 2 things. Ironically the new standard that they're attempting to set mentions nothing about the room acoustics or speaker dispersion or output requirements. Perhaps in the near future that will be revised but let's go with what we know so far to determine if IMAX Enhanced is a must have in your home theater.

IMAX has been a staple in the movie theaters as the best in sound and video for over a decade and now they want to recreate that experience in your home with IMAX Enhanced hardware and movie content.

— October 19, 2018 17:00 in Audio Technologies

Audio Amplifier Classes (A, A/B, D, G, and H): What are the Differences?

Audio Amplifier Classes (A, A/B, D, G, and H): What are the Differences?

Confused by the alphabet soup of amplifier classes? Do you wonder what terms like Class A or Class D mean? Long story short, these aren't grading systems with which to judge amplifier quality, but are in fact descriptions of an amplifier's topology. Understandably, each class brings something a bit different to the table, but the end goal is always the same: amplifying the input signal without introducing distortion. Curious to find out the real differences among the different classes? Keep reading to find out and be sure to watch our recently added YouTube video discussion!

We take you through an alphabet soup of amplifier classes, going over the real meanings behind Class A, B, A/B, G, H, and D and the pros and cons of each design. Check out our YouTube discussion too.

— September 14, 2018 00:00 in Audio Amplifiers

Buyer Beware! How To Tell If Your New 4K/UHD TV has HDR

Buyer Beware! How To Tell If Your New 4K/UHD TV has HDR

High Dynamic Range or HDR is arguably one of the most important features in new 4K/UHD displays. But guess what? Many brand new 4K/UHD TVs don't have HDR—and can't support it! Rest assured, we'll tell you all about HDR, why it's important, how you can tell if your TV has HDR, and finally the HDR technologies to look out for. You don't want to miss this article.

High Dynamic Range or HDR is arguably one of the most important features in new 4K/UHD displays. We cover why HDR is important, how to tell if your TV has HDR, and the HDR formats that matter.

— August 28, 2018 00:00 in HDTV Display Formats